The following article contains spoilers for Captain America: Civil War.

For years, long before Marvel ever announced Captain America: Civil War, comic book fans have been speculating about whether the movie version of Captain America would ever be killed off in the films and replaced by Bucky. That’s what happened in the comics, and most assumed that would be an easy way to resolve Chris Evans’ contract, while introducing a new Cap. Then Marvel announced the third Captain America movie would follow the Civil War storyline, which concludes with Cap’s death, and many fans were sure this was how the movie was going to end. Nope. Despite all the rumors, it was never part of the plan say the film’s writers.

We spoke to Civil War writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely about the film and asked them point blank if at any point during the planning or writing phase, did they ever consider killing off Captain America. McFeely answered definitively, “No.”

He explains:

It also makes him too definitely a martyr and makes it feel like he was right. And we wanted neither side to be right or wrong. We wanted to end it kind of queasy. Both opinions are still standing at the end of the movie.

Markus also wants to remind you that “Captain America doesn’t die in Civil War, he dies in one of the ancillary comics” [Captain America #25] and for them to try and work his death into this movie, “The story would have to go very far. It would have to keep going and going.”

Avengers director Joss Whedon has perhaps trained Marvel audiences to expect some big, shocking death in the Marvel movies, but Civil War is devoid of any major deaths minus Peggy Carter and King T’Chaka.

It is theoretically possible that Captain America could still die in the two-part Avengers: Infinity War movie, but it seems unlikely at this point that Marvel is willing to kill off any of their major superheroes, and that’s probably the smarter move. Steve Rogers may pass the shield off to Bucky or someone else, but Marvel will still want to allow for the possibility of Evans returning to an Avengers film somewhere down the line. Killing him, or Iron Man or Thor or whoever, off would rob them off that opportunity.

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